Malaysia High Court lifts suspension of The Edge publications

The Home Ministry earlier suspended the publishing permit of The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily for three months from July 27 over their reporting of 1MDB. The decision was revoked by the High Court on Sept 21.
The Home Ministry earlier suspended the publishing permit of The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily for three months from July 27 over their reporting of 1MDB. The decision was revoked by the High Court on Sept 21.PHOTO: MALAY MAIL

KUALA LUMPUR - Malaysia's High Court on Monday (Sept 21) revoked the Home Minister's decision to suspend The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily for three months.

Judge Asmabi Mohamad, in allowing the judicial review application, said the minister had breached Section 7 (1) of the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984, the Malaysian Insider reported.

"The respondent did not comply with procedural fairness as he did not give particulars of suspension to the applicant," the judge was quoted as saying.

He said the minister had taken irrelevant consideration to impose a blanket ban of three months, according to the news portal.

The Home Ministry suspended the publishing permit of The Edge Weekly and The Edge Financial Daily for three months from July 27 over their reporting of state investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

The ministry said then in its letter to the Edge group that the publications were judged to be "prejudicial or likely to be prejudicial to public order, security or likely to alarm public opinion, or is likely to be prejudicial to public and national interest".

1MDB, set up by Prime Minister Najib Razak in 2009 to invest in Malaysia's economy, is now struggling to repay more than US$11 billion (S$15.4 billion) worth of debts.

In July, the Wall Street Journal reported that a Malaysian government investigation had found almost US$700 million had entered the Prime Minister's private accounts through entities linked to 1MDB ahead of an election in 2013.

But Malaysia's anti-corruption body said last month that the funds were not from 1MDB and were a political donation from a donor in the Middle East.